Wednesday, May 18, 2011
I have found some information about cancer patients drinking breast milk. Some study in Sweden, I think, found that by putting breast milk onto a rat's tumor, it shrunk it. Other studies have found that patients with bladder cancer received breast milk and peed out dead cancer cells. Who knows if they are drinking the milk, or if the milk was being applied to the tumor directly. There's the thing: there isn't any proof that drinking breast milk will help. But it can't harm, right? I mean, it's not a nasty chemical or even from another animal; it's HUMAN milk! Something many of us were raised on.
So anyway, we still don't know 100% that it is in fact cancer, but it's not looking too good. Maybe I am grasping at straws like I always do, but I would be willing to do anything to save that little girl. I would go on that breast milk inducing drug (Domperidone?) to get myself lactating again, if I thought it would give an ounce of help or hope. My other sister, S, is still breastfeeding my niece, A, but I don't know if she has enough anymore. A is now pretty much almost finished with that. I know she could get it started again with some perseverance and pumping, but......well, it's all speculation. I've yet to mention it to N or D, simply because we have no diagnosis yet.
On the weekend, M as released to go home for a few days. The boys and I went over to their place on Sunday to hang out. M was happy and playing, although somewhat tired, probably due to lack of good sleep in the past few days and also the steroids they had her on.
On Monday, they took M back to Sick Kids to admit her for her biopsy scheduled for yesterday. Yesterday was a huge waiting day. Nobody knew what time the biopsy was happening. And we all had to play telephone tag : my mom, S, my dad and I. I'm sure my brother was in there somewhere too. He is lucky though, as he lives right in Toronto and can go over to the hospital basically anytime and be there very quickly. Can't believe I'm saying someone is lucky to live in T.O., because, blech, but in this case it is.
M finally had her biopsy around 3 pm I think, but didn't get out of recovery until about 8. I still haven't talked directly to N since Sunday, mainly because I don't want to keep bugging her with phone calls, and also because when S and I were trying to call this morning, we discovered we had the wrong numbers.
M spent the night in Constant Care, where they could monitor her carefully. Her heart rate was low after the surgery, and she is on morphine too, which requires constant monitoring of their oxygen levels. She was responsive though, a good thing, and she is having visitors today. They did a CT scan of her head this morning, to make sure that there was no hemorrhaging from the biopsy.
Unfortunately, it looks like they will be waiting until probably Friday before they get the results back. She posted a note on Facebook earlier, and mentioned that right now feels "a bit like the calm before the storm." It is terribly nerve-wracking. Even I dream of M every night, and wake often wondering what the outcome of all this will be.
I must stay positive and hopeful.
Saturday, May 14, 2011
Anyhow, I will not complain of boredom again. Because you know the old adage; be careful what you wish for.... This was not the kind of excitement I was longing for! Not at all!
Last night the family and I went down to Sick Kids to visit my sis, BIL and M. With not being able to leave before 5 or just after, and having to stop and buy some Wendy's for dinner, and also with the constant traffic that encompasses the 400 series of highways, we didn't get there until almost 7. That left us with just an hour to visit.
But that was ok, because M and the rest were wiped out. M hadn't had enough sleep the night before for such a small girl, and then had been sedated during the afternoon for her MRI, so she was getting pretty tired.
She was, however, just as spunky and cute as ever. Looking at her, you'd never know there was something evil and ugly growing inside her sweet little skull. I constantly ask myself, as I'm sure so many have done before me, why? Why her? Why this??
We've had a little bit more news since then. I'll copy and paste what my sis wrote on Facebook this morning.
"The oncologist came in with the results last night and they were a bit confusing. They said they were unusual. The one mass at the base of her brain has a cyst in the middle but is surrounded by tumor, but it has a clear defined edge which is supposed to be a good sign (benign?) They also found another mass on her cerebellum which is another tumor. They have decided to do a biopsy early next week, so we may possibly go home today for a couple days and then come back. The biopsy will involve removing skull to take it, and then they will decide on treatment, they won't remove the brain stem one and probably not the other one either, just chemo and/or radiation (I wasn't clear on that part)."
So that's all we know. It sounds a little more hopeful than what we were originally told...although the thought of my poor little M going through chemo and/or radiation is frightening at the least. Plus the whole removing of her skull business...
My sis and family are home now. They were discharged this morning with a prescription for a steroid for M, and were told to come back on Monday so they'd be ready for the biopsy on Tues.
That's it for now. Please keep sending those good vibes and prayers.
Friday, May 13, 2011
Thursday, May 12, 2011
Today was forecasted to be 23 or 24 C here, depending on which weather forecast you watched. But here it is, 10:20, and it's still quite cold out. It's actually cooler than when I took the kids to school at 8:30, when the sun was just behind a thin layer of cloud. Now it's behind a thick layer of cloud, and I feel really bad that I told my boys they were fine to wear shorts to school for the day. R has gone on a trip to another school for a track and field day. He'll be outside all day, and I really hope he brought his sweater with him.
Today I have four kids for the day. I was supposed to have six, but two of my three older girls are away, so I have the three toddlers, and one almost 6 year old girl. She is ok with playing on her own, but the oldest toddler, J(2 3/4) is making a real nuisance of himself. He's being rough, loud, and obnoxious (following in his two older brothers' footsteps) and he's driving poor S mental (and me as well!)
We were going to go to the park, or for a walk or something, but it's kind of chilly and I'm feeling like staying home now. We did already play in the backyard this morning.
Tomorrow is Friday the thirteenth. Yes, that's random, I know. Anyone superstitious out there?
This weekend DH is going up to the cottage with a few buddies from school to put the water line in and hang out. Probably do guy stuff, whatever that is. I'm glad he has friends, but it still annoys me that he's going away. He doesn't even ask me if it's ok, or for that matter, bother to tell me to my face he's going. I found out he's going because I overheard him telling his grandmother (yes, the Nan). She owns the cottage as you probably know, and spends most of the summer up there. Then she calls our house or DH's cell phone every few days asking him inane questions and complaining about stupid stuff like the tv isn't working (because she hasn't plugged it in, or the remote's batteries are dead) and asking him to quickly make a two+ hour drive up to fix it. It's VERY irritating, and after spending a week with her and seeing for myself just how deteriorated her brain function is, I REALLY don't think she should be living up there alone. One day she's going to go to bed with the stove on and burn the place down.
Anyway, everything about the cottage irritates me. I hate how we have to give up our time and money to do stuff for it, and don't even ever get to have it for ourselves. I get that in life you give a little to get a little, and to enjoy a cottage, you have to put in the work (or exorbitant amounts of money to pay someone else to do the work). But we never really get to enjoy it. Because to me, enjoying it would be being up there with just my family, without HER, or for once to be able to have friends up there enjoying it with us, or MY family. But I just can't do that to anyone else; make them put up with HER. Everyone has one or two of those people in their family, so they don't need to be subjected to them if they're not in the family. Know what I mean? Plus, for the most part, in order for us to invite up other families, we need HER bedroom.
I've been painstakingly typing away here on my iPod for a good 45 minutes, and the sun is finally starting to burn through some clouds. Of course it's too late now to go anywhere, but the kids are having fun with playdough.
So back to the weekend. DH is going away for most of the weekend, so I am stuck with the boys and all of the weekend stuff to do by myself. Grocery shopping is no fun with them as it is, as they hate shopping, so I'm not looking forward to that. L has a birthday party to go to Sat night, and swimming lessons on Sun morning. Then after that we'll be heading out to see my family. I'll visit my dad on the way to see my mom and sister N. I don't know if my sis S will be around; hopefully I'll get to see her too.
I was hoping to get some more work done on prepping my veggie garden. I'd like to get a few things started, like peas and potatoes and perhaps some herbs too. But all the soil needs to be turned over, and mixed with some bags of organic material or manure. Not a job I like to do on my own.
Well, it's nearly lunchtime, and the children need to clean up, which essentially means I clean up while they wander around the room as I try to direct them to "pick that up and put it here". So tedious.
Monday, May 9, 2011
Do you know what this means??
Spring is finally here! I love that I can hang my laundry out to dry now! I love the smell of freshly air-dried laundry, it reminds me of home and childhood.
My mom always dried our laundry outside, except for in the winter of course. It saved (and still does) energy and money too. Sure, our towels were a little rougher and our jeans a little crinklier, but we grew up with that and didn't know any different.
Now I love that I am helping the environment just a little bit more, and saving my energy costs. I don't like bugs landing on my laundry, but it comes with the territory unfortunately.
If you are looking at getting an outdoor clothesline, I thought I'd give you some tips on drying your clothes outside. (Yes, I'm totally out of blogging ideas!!)
- Start your laundry early in the morning. I try to have my wash finished by at the latest 10 a.m. If it's really hot in the middle of summer, this doesn't matter as much, as I've hung my laundry out at 1:00 or 2:00 and still had it dry by the end of the day.
- Don't use Oxy-Clean in the laundry. One year I was throwing in a scoop-ful with each load to help get out all the stains the boys seem to always get. Once that laundry got in the sun, the colours in the clothes started to fade more and more. It wasn't until my sister pointed it out to me that I realized the culprit behind my not-so-colourful t-shirts.
- If you're doing a load of whites, I find you don't need to add bleach. You can add some Oxy-Clean in then, and the sun will do the rest of the brightening for you.
- I put in a little extra liquid fabric softener. It helps with the crunchiness.
- Watch the forecast. If it's going to rain later in the day, get your laundry out earlier.
- Shake the clothes out as you take them off the line!! Sometimes bugs hide!
- If you decided to hang your wet clothes out late and leave them all night, you could end up with earwigs inside.